Institutions and Regulatory Reforms for the Age of Governance
Edited by Jacint Jordana and David Levi-Faur
Chapter 10: Modes of Regulation in the Governance of the European Union: Towards a Comprehensive Evaluation
Christoph Knill and Andrea Lenschow 1. INTRODUCTION1 Forms of governance are in transition on an international scale. Neither the juxtaposition of the market and state regulation nor that of public versus private actors in governing society match well with the multiple faces of modern governance. The classical regulatory state, which has emerged as an alternative to the welfare state – both however with the intent to complement or correct market mechanisms – is gradually changing its distinctive face of top-down authoritative control of market and society and is joining with other steering mechanisms.2 The process of regulating is being decentralized, allowing access to and spreading responsibilities across economic and societal actors; the regulations themselves are taking on various forms ranging from substantive rules to incentives and procedural requirements; chains of control are blurring and mechanisms of control softening with the emphasis shifting towards more responsiveness and self-responsibility. While this trend is a general one, the European Union (EU), which has been characterized as a regulatory state par excellence (Majone, 1994, 85–92), represents a particularly good example to investigate and evaluate it. As part of a larger governance debate in Europe, triggered by the declining competitiveness of the European economy globally and concerns with regard to the protection of citizens in an increasingly uncertain environment (characterized by rapid technological change as well as open borders, and the fading capacities of national states to cope with these challenges), the EU is experimenting with a variety of different regulatory approaches. Historically, the EU regulators...
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